Fasten your seat belts!
I like to call qi gong “meditation in movement”. I was introduced first to Tai Chi back in London in 1968-nearly 50 years ago (oh my God!). Since then I have studied multiple forms of yoga and qi gong. This one seems to cut to the chase, gets you right were you live and can be practiced just about anywhere.
I’ve noticed that everyone around me seems quite obsessed with “working out.” And I do agree with the fact that exercising until you become a sweaty, tired mess is sometimes useful. In fact, it should be done regularly: we need to get rid of the toxins, of the calories and of the stress accumulated on a regular basis.
But I think something that most people tend to overlook is that working out also burns your energy. It’s a one purpose exercise, and in that way it isn’t self-sufficient. That is were qi gong comes in handy. It is the perfect complementary exercise to, say, jogging. Instead of burning up your energy, you actually try to cultivate it. You build your inner strength in a gentle, but very deep way.
Doing Qi Gong and jogging balance each other and go hand-in-hand. It’s about living according to both the Eastern and the Western wisdom.
Of course, some of you are probably wondering why not just getting into the practice of yoga, which associates both building your energy and “working out.” But the truth is, our western bodies are different from those of our friends from the East, hence not everyone is flexible enough for yoga. Plus, yoga can be very harmful if not done properly, and I’m sure many of us can actually relate to a yoga accident.
So since I can’t bent my body into a pretzel shape, I thought Qi Gong was a good alternative. The Ren Xue Qi Gong fits me particularly well, because it goes straight to the point.
But whatever type of Qi Gong you are interested in, go ahead, don’t be intimidated! Join the “slow” movement. Check out a teacher near you, it’s pretty sensational and you’ll quickly feel you need it.
Update – My friend Sondra Barett sent me this encouraging discovery: “Qigong improves quality of life for breast cancer patients, study suggests. www.sciencedaily.com Researchers have found qigong, an ancient mind-body practice, reduces depressive symptoms and improves quality of life in women undergoing radiotherapy for breast cancer.” Need I say more?